Hektor6766 wrote:I think my problem with word order comes from thinking of adjectives in the western sense. Would I be right in saying that Japanese has no true adjectives, only adjectival nouns and descriptive verbs? That adjectival nouns precede the direct object, and that auxiliary descriptive verbs follow the object and precede the main verb, unless the な construction is used?
I'm not sure what you mean by that : na-adjectives are sometimes called "adjectival nouns", and i-adjectives are sometimes called "stative verbs" (although it seems rare), but adjectives in general modify nouns (a word class), not necessarily direct objects (a grammatical function), and in any case, the adjective comes before the noun when it's used as an attributive (赤い車, きれいな車), and after the noun when it's used as a predicative (車は赤い, 車はきれい). Just like in English.
astaroth wrote:I'm kind of confused ... I thought it was 新しくて赤い ... is it therefore correct to write 新しい赤い？is it like using the masu-stem form instead of the te-form to link two sentences together?
In the right context, it's grammatically correct : just like in English you can say "a new red car", you can say 新しい赤い車 (i.e it doesn't mean that the car happens to be new and red, it means that this red car is new), with the same word order. I'm not sure that's a good thing, but I can't help but seeing 赤い車 as a noun (赤車 if you wish), with 新しい modifying it as in a normal adjective+noun construction. In other words, I think it should be analysed as [新しい[赤い車]], as opposed to [[新しくて赤い]車] .
I've not seen it used often by the way, but maybe that's due to my lack of exposure to the language.